World Bank supports economic recovery and greater competitiveness in Colombia with $ 500 million loan

The World Bank Board of Directors today approved $ 500 million in funding to promote productivity and accelerate Colombia’s economic recovery from the crisis triggered by the COVID-19 pandemic.

The loan will support a number of policies aimed at improving the regulatory framework alongside the private sector-led stimulus. This includes streamlining and digitizing paperwork and better regulatory quality; guarantees for the transparency and integrity of the green bond market and the improvement of competitiveness and transparency in public sector acquisitions.

“This operation is of great importance for Colombia and, together with the law on social investment, will allow the national government to secure the necessary resources to ensure continuity and strengthen social welfare programs and recovery strategies. economic, ”said Alejandra Botero Barco. , CEO of the National Planning Department.

According to the official, the operation “confirms the World Bank’s support for the efforts we have made to organize our political action program and strengthen our regulatory framework, in line with our economic recovery efforts, particularly in terms of competitiveness and globalization ”.

The funds will also be used to promote innovation in micro, small and medium enterprises (MSMEs) and projects related to the environment and sustainable development, renewable energy and the reduction of carbon emissions. In addition, it will encourage digital finance through crowdfunding and increased competitiveness and transparency in the low value payment system.

“This operation supports the Colombian government’s recovery strategy, which aims to reactivate the economy and achieve rapid, resilient and sustainable economic growth,” said Mark Thomas, World Bank director for Colombia, Mexico and Venezuela. “This includes promoting e-government, green finance, innovation and a thriving entrepreneurial ecosystem that contributes to the development and well-being of the Colombian population. “

The operation also aims to promote high-impact, women-led businesses, as well as greater globalization of the Colombian economy, all goals aimed at tackling structural factors that hamper productivity growth in the region. country.

“Thanks to this operation, we will be able to: improve the regulatory framework in order to normalize the activity of the private sector; stimulate investment in science, technology and innovation among MSMEs, with a focus on sustainability, as well as the promotion of digital finance and entrepreneurship among women for increased entrepreneurial activity, via financing facilities and access to trade, ”added Botero Barco.

The Ministry of Treasury and Public Credit and the National Planning Department will be responsible for coordinating and implementing this loan.

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